A study essentially concerned with the interaction between a shock wave in an ionized gas and an external magnetic field. The particular configuration considered corresponds very closely to experimental conditions attained in exploding wire experiments, and should prove useful in interpreting the results of such experiments. When a missile traverses the ionosphere, it produces a shock wave that, because of the presence of the earth's magnetic field, is magnetohydrodynamic in character. The missile loses a certain amount of energy per unit length of its path because of the drag on it, and it is this energy that drives the shock wave. If the missile is traveling at a sufficiently high Mach number, and if the flow deflections produced by it are sufficiently small, the problem of calculating the flow around the missile can be made formally identical with the problem treated in this Memorandum.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Research memorandum series. The Research Memorandum was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1973 that represented working papers meant to report current results of RAND research to appropriate audiences.
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